Executive Profile

Jeff Dauplaise

Dauplaise Jewelry: Making Magic

The Dauplaise design and sample room is stacked floor to ceiling with boxes containing nearly every fashion jewelry component imaginable. The meticulously organized space offers a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the magic that makes this beloved company so unique and special. According to president and owner, Jeffrey Dauplaise, “If a buyer can imagine it in the showroom, our seasoned design team can make a sample on the spot.”

Jeff Dauplaise

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The Dauplaise office has been in the same location on West 36th Street in Manhattan since the company was founded 45 years ago. Founder Carol Dauplaise started her eponymous brand in 1978 after a failed attempt to purchase part of Miriam Haskell — a company which she helped grow — from Morris Kinsler.

Initially, it was all hands on deck for the Dauplaise family. Her husband Norman, a famed harness driver, secured the office space. Her children Jeffrey and Richard were tasked with carding and ticketing all the jewelry on the dining room table before they started their homework. The team was lean during those formative years; one salesperson, one designer, and warehouse/shipping manager Ramon Messina, who still works for the company. Carol Dauplaise was creative in her approach, overcoming the company’s lack of employees by hosting “Tag and Bag” parties — a wine and cheese social hour that put everyone (sometimes even buyers who eventually became very good friends) to work preparing orders to be shipped. Before long, the company had earned a reputation as a premium distributor for high-quality, trend-right accessories. The subsequent editorial and industry acclaim helped build the brand into a multi-million dollar business.

Sadly in 2016, at the age of 77 years old Carol Dauplaise was walking to work when she was tragically struck and killed by a livery cab. The team, most of whom have been with the company for years, reeled from the sudden loss. Vowing to keep the company moving forward, Richard and Jeffrey, along with their family of co-workers, turned their grief toward carrying on the legacy established by Carol.

Jeffrey, who had been in charge of the warehouse since 1994, bought out his brother Richard and became sole owner and president of the company in 2019. He currently runs the business with a team that includes many industry veterans, including senior creative director Ann Peerce and design director Melissa Cintron. Today, the business is a diverse mix of branded sales, private label development, Laura Ashley and Ruby Road jewelry licenses, and collaboration with television host and founder/editor-in-chief of Spotlight Magazine Sydney Sadick.

From staple pieces to limited collections, Dauplaise Jewelry has been helping women rise to the occasion for decades. Vintage pieces are popular items on resale sites like eBay, Poshmark, and Etsy — all of which is a strong testament of the brand’s quality and aesthetic over time. Optimistic about the company’s future prospects, Jeffrey continues to honor his mother’s legacy. “I have nothing but respect for my team,” he said. “I can’t thank every single employee enough for their support in keeping our company going and stepping up, especially through the difficult times our industry and the country has gone thru in the last few years.”

Jeffery closed with this, “You won’t find mass-produced jewelry here. With full design control and our own in-house production, we create jewelry that you can feel good about.”